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In a class the other day on report writing the teacher said when you write something up like a miswired receptacle you should report the general area where it is, not where it is at.

The reason why was that you wanted the electrician to do the work and he would check on the receptacle and find the one that needed repair.

If you told where it was, you were giving the homeowner permission to do the repair.

I believe if the homeowner does the repair he is not going to check for other receptacles and I don't believe just telling a general area is going to stop some homeowner from doing the repairs

What do you think?

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Sounds bogus to me (I'm with you). Then again, I'm no lawyer......

I specify exactly were a mis- wired receptacle is located, etc. This is so a good electrician does not have to spend the time to hunt it down, and so a lazy electrician doesn't just say he can't find it and move on.

I can't see how being vague could be a good thing in this business.

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I'd write "the GFCI receptacle closest to the window, over the kitchen counter is mis-wired and is an electrocution hazard. It's likely an easy fix. Have an electrician correct it as soon as possible."

I also tell the client where the grading can be improved, where the roof is leaking and which windows are fogged. Identifying a problem without specifying a location provides nearly useless information that will likely result in the repair person not finding the same issue and then proclaiming the inspector an idiot.

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In a class the other day on report writing the teacher say when you wrote something up like a miss wired receptacle you should report the general area where it was not where it was at.

I think the teacher needs to go back to school.

You can always write things like that up based on this model:

... locations include but are not limited to: location 1, 2, 3, 3, etc. Have an electrician make repairs.id="blue">

If there's more than say 3 locations then I might broaden it up and say:

There's lots & lots of receptacles miss-wired. Have an electrician check all of them and make repairs.id="blue">

It's inspection forklore to be vague.

Chris, Oregon

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If you can accurately state where it is, then do so. If not, don't.

The "teacher" for the class is trying to introduce a (nonexistent) level of security to the inspector by being specifically vague. It's bull. It's the lesson plan for boneheads that can't write a complete sentence in the first place.

There are times when I'll say "I found x, y, and z in these locations. In the past, if I find multiple defects, there are probably some hidden defects I didn't find. Expect some additional repairs at XYZ."

Or something like that.

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Wow, Phillip,

I don't feel as bad about missing the meeting now. I'll pile on and agree with everyone else about this. When possible, I try to follow the example that Katen shared on this site several years ago; "at the left whatchamacallit, I found that the doohickey was broken". In almost five years of inspecting, I have yet to have the first call asking me for clarification about what I found and where the finding was located (thank you Mr. Katen). I can't see how precision can be a bad thing. I test every accessible receptacle in the house anyway, so that part of his argument is moot to me.


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That type of teaching is done a lot around here not only for home inspection but also WDI inspections. WDI classes around here are given by the Indiana State Chemist at Purdue University. Purdue clearly teaches everyone not to be specific when it comes to describing location.

With that said, I agree with everyone here even though there are always exceptions.

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Originally posted by SonOfSwamp

My takeaway from this thread is a paraphrase of Willie Nelson: "Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be home inspectors."

Let 'em be doctors and lawyers and such.



Hey, we went to see Willie this past Saturday and he is still singing that same song. He has added a few new ones, on was titled "It hurt because I did not listen!". Makes one wonder if Willie knows a little about home inspectors.

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Originally posted by davidlord

I guess Willie is better than "Kid Rock". That's who the fine folks in charge of the St Augustine amphitheater booked for this past weekend.

Willie played "pro bono" for the Hepatitis C Foundation this past weekend. It was held at a farm in Leipers Fork, TN. 5,000 tickets sold out in a week strictly by word of mouth. Best $35 per ticket I have spent in many years. He played non-stop for about two and half hours.

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